New polling in the closing days before the midterm elections explores the key or motivating issues for voters. While it comes as no surprise to anyone who grocery shops or gasses up their vehicles each week, the elites in Washington and across the country are grasping at straws. 

Inflation is the leading issue across polling. Policymakers who greenlighted inflationary policies over the past year and continue to push for more spending should beware.

Here are 5 polls capturing the issues that will play a motivating role for voters: 

POLITICO-Morning Consult: 78% of adults said both the economy and inflation will play a “major role” in how they cast their ballots. Runner-up issues: 61% said crime and 57% said abortion access.

Washington Post-ABC News: 26% of adults said the economy is their top issue of concern whiel 22% said abortion and 21% pointed to inflation. Combining the economy and inflation, a whopping 47% (or nearly half) are motivated by these economic issues.

Economist/YouGov: 27% of likely voters said inflation/prices, followed by 10% who said health care and 10% who said jobs and the economy.

Rasmussen: 26% of likely U.S. voters said inflation is the most important issue, while another 22% name the economy as the top issue. Abortion rights placed third (19%).

Investor’s Business Daily/TIPP: 52% of adults see the economy as among the top 3 issues facing the country, followed by immigration (25%) and crime (24%).

Inflation’s impact is creeping up the income ladder

The Wall Street Journal recently polled likely voters and found interesting insights into just how widespread the impacts of inflation are being felt.

We know that poor and low-income households are disproportionately affected by inflation because they spend more of their income on groceries and gas. However, the financial burden from inflation is increasingly weighing on middle and high-income households too.

Some 39% of those earning $60,000 up to $100,000 a year—which includes the nation’s 2021 median household income of about $70,800–report major financial strains because of inflation up from a quarter in March.

Nearly double the number of households with annual household incomes of $150,000 to $200,000 say rising prices are creating major financial strains (26%) from March. 

Bottom Line

Expect inflation and the economy to play an outsized role in how Americans decide who should govern the nation, their states, and even their cities. 

Unfortunately, this is a sticky issue that will be around for some time to come.